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Mix Up Your Trail Mix

10/02/2016

There are hundreds of combinations for trail mix. Choose your favorite nuts to start and customize to your liking! You're guaranteed to never get bored.

 

Start with your nuts:

Salted peanuts

Toasted coconut cashews

Whole almonds, raw

Sliced almonds

Glazed pecans

Raw pecans

Raw walnuts

Cinnamon roasted almonds

Cocoa roasted almonds

Unsalted Cashews

Brazil nuts, raw

Hazelnuts, raw

Glazed walnuts

Pistachios, salted

Macadamias, raw

 

Add in some seeds:

Corn nuts

Dried green peas

Raw sunflower seeds

Wasabi peas

Edamame, dry roasted with sea salt

Raw pumpkin seeds

 

Make it Sweet:

Cacao nibs

M&Ms

Chocolate chips

Yogurt raisins

Dark chocolate espresso beans

 

Choose your Fruits:

Raisins

Banana chips

Golden raisins

Cranberries

Pineapple

Coconut

Dried kiwi

Dried papaya

Dried apricots

Dried apple chunks

Dried mango

Dried cherries

Dried blueberries

Dried strawberries

Dried goji berries

 

Get the Crunch:

Chocolate hazelnut granola

Rice Chex

Pumpkin flax granola

Popcorn

Pretzels

 

Seasonings:

Sea salt

Nutmeg

Pumpkin spice

Cinnamon

Butternut Squash Soup

09/29/2016

INGREDIENTS:

3 Tbsp. coconut oil, divided

2 garlic cloves, minced

1 medium red onion, finely chopped

1 carrot, skinned and chopped

1 Liter vegetable broth

1 butternut squash, cut in half lengthwise and seeded

1 tsp salt, more to taste

1 tsp cinnamon

½ tsp nutmeg

1/8 tsp allspice

A pinch of ground cloves

 

Garnish (optional)

1 apple, thinkly sliced

Honey

Cinnamon

 

DIRECTIONS:

  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit
  2. Melt 1 Tbsp. of coconut oil, drizzle over seeded butternut squash halves and sprinkle with salt, place face down in a 9x11 cake pan and fill with ¼ of an inch with water, loosely cover with tinfoil. Place into oven and bake for 40-45 minutes or until the skin can be easily pierced with a fork.
  3. In a large skillet bring the remaining 2 Tbsp. of coconut oil to med-high heat, sauté minced garlic for 2-3 minutes, add finely chopped red onions, combine and let cook for 5 additional minutes.
  4. Add salt, cinnamon, nutmeg, allspice, and ground cloves to onion mixture and combine.
  5. Add 1 liter of vegetable broth and the chopped carrot to the pan, bring to a simmer, cover and cook for 10-12 minutes or until carrots are cooked completely. Remove from heat. Transfer to a blender
  6. Remove butternut squash from oven and let sit for 10-15 minutes, with a spoon scrape out flesh and transfer to same blender with broth mixture.
  7. Puree until smooth.
  8. Return to large saucepan, bring mixture to a simmer and cover for 4-5 minutes until mixture has thickened.

 Garnish instructions (optional)

  1. Bring 1 tsp of coconut oil to medium heat in a small sauce pan, sauté apple slices for 2-3 minutes, drizzle with desired honey (1 tsp) and sprinkle with desired cinnamon (1 tsp), continue to cook for 3-4 minutes or until apples are soft.
  2. Ladle 1 cup of soup into bowl, garnish with apples and enjoy!

 

GUEST BLOGGER | Meet Brittany

Grounded by faith, family and flavorful food, Brittany is a self-proclaimed flavor genius passionate about inspiring others to live purposefully, mindfully and wholeheartedly.

WEBSITE

What is Muesli and Why Should You be Eating it?

09/27/2016

Some people confuse muesli with granola, but there are some distinct differences. Muesli is healthier, contains fewer calories and has less sugar. There are also a few versions, including gluten-free, toasted, untoasted and fresh Muesli, which is soaked in water or fruit juice overnight.

 

What makes Muesli a healthy breakfast? There’s a high amount of fiber and whole grains. Whole grains help keep you full all morning and aid in weight loss. Muesli also contains antioxidants, omega-3 fatty acids and the nuts in it are a great source of protein.

 

The best part about muesli? It’s versatility! You can eat it cold with milk, yogurt and fresh fruit. It can also be eaten hot like oatmeal (just add hot water and let sit for 3 minutes). Another option is to soak it overnight. This unleashes all the flavors and you can mix it into pancakes, muffins or even cookies.

 

For the healthiest muesli:

Choose unroasted

Watch the serving size (should only be ½ cup max)

Choose a variety that contains fewer than 10 grams of carbohydrates per serving

Contains a mixture of healthy fats

Has a low glycemic index

Contains less than 3 grams of saturated fat per 100 grams

 

The healthiest version of muesli is one that you make yourself! This enables you to know exactly what ingredients are in it. Check out the recipe below and customize it to your liking.

 

Muesli

(10 servings)

1 cup oats

½ cup raw almonds, chopped

½ shredded unsweetened coconut

1/3 cup sunflower seeds

1/3 cup pumpkin seeds

1/3 cup chia seeds

1/3 cup wheat germ

½ cup almonds, roughly chopped

4 tbsp. linseeds

2 tsp. cinnamon

 

Mix all ingredients together in a bowl, store in large glass jar an enjoy!

 

 

 

5 Foods You Should Be Eating to Lose Weight

09/25/2016

If you are trying to lose weight, you should be eating foods that are packed with nutrients that will fill you up, without all of the calories. Work to incorporate these five nutrient-dense foods in to your diet!

 Broccoli

The high fiber content in broccoli will leave you feeling full. Broccoli also has a high protein content, at about 4 grams per serving, which is higher than most other vegetables. Not a fan of broccoli? Try for cauliflower, cabbage, or Brussels sprouts for similar health benefits.

Cottage Cheese

Non-fat cottage cheese weighs in at about 100 calories and 15 grams of protein per cup, making it an excellent choice to provide you with nutrients and keep you full! When working to cut down on calories to lost weight, it is important to intake large amounts of protein to not only keep hunger at bay, but to preserve your muscle while losing fat.

Eggs

Skip on eating just the egg whites and instead go for the whole egg. This will provide you with lots of protein and healthy fats that will leave you feeling full at only 90 calories per egg. Addiitionally, egg yolks are loaded with vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants to protect your eyes and help with memory and muscle control.

Tuna

Rich in healthy omega-3s, one can of tuna can provide 36 percent of your daily value of protein. Just be sure to avoid the deli-counter tuna salad that’s loaded with mayo, opt instead for an easy-to-open pack of tuna in water.

Grapefruit

Loaded with vitamin C, folic acid, potassium, and pectin, this fruit is great for your heart! In order to find the juiciest fruit, look for grapefruit that seems heavy for it's size and add to a spinach salad for tons of health benefits!

 

 

Stovetop Pumpkin Spice Candied Almonds

09/20/2016

Fill your home with the scent of fall by making these Stovetop Pumpkin Spice Candied Almonds. These deliciously sweet nuts make for the perfect snack!

 

Serves 4

INGREDIENTS

1 cup almonds
½ cup brown sugar
1 teaspoon pumpkin spice
¼ teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon coconut oil
1 tablespoon + 2 teaspoons water

DIRECTIONS

  1. Place all ingredients except almonds in a saucepan and cook over medium heat for about 3-5 minutes, until everything has dissolved and the mixture is bubbling. 
  2. Add almonds and cook for 5 minutes, stirring often to evenly coat almonds in pumpkin spice glaze. Remove pan from heat, and transfer almonds to a sheet of wax paper to cool completely. Enjoy!

 

GUEST BLOGGER | Meet Lauren

Lauren Gaskills is an inspirational writer, speaker and food blogger whose passion is to inspire others to lead healthy, happy redeemed lives. Visit her at MakingLiftSweet.com

WEBSITE

Showers: What Temp is Best?

09/19/2016

 

For many, showering is a daily habit. But one thing you may not think about is the effect that the water temperature has on your body. Studies have found that the average water temperature for a person’s shower is 105 degrees Fahrenheit. While a nice hot shower can offer many benefits, turning your water down a few degrees can also bring about several advantages. Check them out and think twice about what you want to accomplish next time you hop in the shower!

Benefits of Hot Showers:

  • Warmer temperatures help to relieve tension
  • Boosts metabolism
  • Soothe stiff muscles
  • Alleviates migraines
  • Opens pores and cleans skin by removing toxins
  • Can up your oxytocin levels
  • Ease anxiety
  • The steam serves as a natural decongestant to relieve cold symptoms

 

Benefits of Cold Showers:

  • Instant temp change can awaken body
  • Relieves fatigue
  • Increase mental alertness
  • Hydrate hair and skin, whereas hot showers dry them out
  • Studies have found that a cooler shower (~68 degrees F) for 2-3 minutes a day can help with depression
  • Stimulates immune system
  • Reduces hair loss
  • Tightens skin

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